Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Opera legend to teach master classes

Legendary mezzo soprano Marilyn Horne is in Fort Worth today for a three-day visit with the TCU School of Music. She is scheduled to teach a series of master classes tomorrow and Thursday, along with a booksigning of her second autobiography Marilyn Horne, The Song Continues and a reception and dinner.

Twelve TCU voice students, selected by juried audition, will have a 30-minute private lesson with Horne and will sing in a closing public recital Thursday.

The public is invited to observe the teaching sessions tomorrow at 2:30 p.m. in PepsiCo Recital Hall at no cost, although seating is limited. Patrons are asked to refrain from photography. Following the teaching sessions, Horne will sign her book in the lobby of the Walsh Center beginning at 5:30 p.m.

Thursday's master classes, also free and open to the public in PepsiCo, run from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., with a 3 p.m. closing recital and closing remarks by Horne. A private reception ($500 per ticket) and dinner ($50 per ticket) with Horne follows in the ballroom of the Brown-Lupton University Union.

Horne, 75, spent 29 years with the Metropolitan Opera during a four-decade career that took her to venues around the world. Today, she keeps a full schedule teaching at universities and music academies. Her Marilyn Horne Foundation which began in 1994 has introduced more than 30,000 aspiring young artists to the art of vocal recital and classical song through education programs across the country and full recital appearances.

In December 2007, she attended opening night of the Fort Worth-TCU Symphonic Choir's Christmas performance with Skitch Henderson's New York Pops at Carnegie Hall in New York. Horne was so moved by the performance that she returned to hear them again the second night and sought out TCU choir director Ron Shirey to offer her compliments, even offering to come to Fort Worth and work with his students.

This week, she makes good on her promise.

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